Nation
Medha Patkar quits AAP
Senior leader and anti-Narmada Dam activist Medha Patkar on Saturday said that she has quit the AAP following dissident leaders Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan's expulsion from the party's national executive in Delhi.
 
Announcing her decision at a hurriedly convened press conference, Patkar expressed pain over the development and said: "Whatever happened in AAP meeting is inappropriate and I condemn it." 
 
Patkar said the violence and other happenings show disrespect to the party's senior leaders and did not augur well and so she has decided to quit.
 
Patkar is reported to have been unhappy with Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's style of functioning.
 
Besides Patkar, several groups and activists of the National Alliance of Peoples' Movements are expected to follow suit.
 
On March 6, senior AAP leader Mayank Gandhi had unfurled the banner of revolt by revealing AAP internal meetings and later claimed he was being targeted. 

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COMMENTS

MG Warrier

2 years ago

The goings on within AAP or the criticism AAP is facing would not surprise those who have been watching the ‘evolution’ of AAP as a political party. The emergence of AAP on India’s political scene was welcomed by many including this writer. Not because we expected AAP to become a political alternative at a time when both left and right, as also the middle, if one existed, political forces and their leaderships were doing more harm to the country than good. AAP served as a timely ALARM or Wake-up Call for the people of India who left their destiny to the inefficient and corrupt political leadership. AAP has played its role as a change agent. For sustaining the change, ‘WE THE PEOPLE’ should take charge.

REPLY

Pradeep Kumar

In Reply to MG Warrier 2 years ago

We the people are often intellectually lethargic, reactive,and even more, often self serving in a very short sighted way.This is what I have learned from my last Loksabha experience, on having to lead at a tiny area in Kerala. I had no public experience of any sort till then. It was extremely difficult to keep up one's morale and patience. The so called PEOPLE will never rise up to do anything for themselves. The fired up leaders have to inspire, spoon feed and baby sit the public.That is why the country has gone to the dogs. Why should any person, other than a few with burning passion against corruption, either spoon feed or baby sit. We the people will never take charge (of anything)As for AAP, I love Moneylife's article "perfect victory". That precisely sums up my feelings and my heart is with AK.

Real Health Insurance!
This is with regard to “Health Insurance: Conflicting Data on Claims Ratio in IRDAI and IIB Reports” by Raj Pradhan. Insurance—particularly health insurance—is either unavailable at the age when the problems of health are bound to occur, however, good one's lifestyle may be. Real health in-surance would be when senior citizens, beyond 70 years of age and women who beyond 40 years of age, become more vulnerable to unexpected imbalances, also get health insurance with easy claim option. There should be easy access to health facility to all those who are not covered under either the government or banks’ or public sector undertakings’ schemes.
B Yerram Raju, online comment

 

Candid Assessment!

This is with regard to “History Will Not Be Kind to Dr Manmohan Singh” by Sucheta Dalal. This is one of the best written articles on Manmohan Singh. It has, rightly, gone into the details of the plunder under Manmohan Singh as prime minister. It has also, for the first time, gone into specifics of the looting that happened when he was the finance minister that can be attributed only to him. It is clear that it was his ability to be a ‘wolf in sheep’s clothing’ that got him to occupy the position of power. Make no mistake about assessing him, whether you are a 35-year-old or 50-year-old. Ap-pearances are deceptive; Manmohan Singh proves that.
 
He was a facilitator for the loot and, thus, got to enjoy power. He was a good economist; hence, he definitely knew where this was leading him. But he was a better politician who was successfully managing perception. He knows that he cannot reclaim political ground. Hence, he is trying to sal-vage the ‘economist’ position as a reformer. He was certainly good for the moneybags, or suitcas-es, and enjoyed their patronage.
 
History has to judge him fairly and you have, correctly, started a candid assessment.
Krishna, online comment
 

II. Political Compulsions of Dr Manmohan Singh

This is a very well-written piece bringing out the administrative lapses of Dr Manmohan Singh and allowing ethics deficit to take over the entire economy. Scams after scams during his tenure were merrily tolerated and these accounted for the political compulsions which were taking shelter un-der his personal honesty and integrity. 
 
These compulsions led to the ignoring of expectations of the masses from a world-renowned economist who was to bring changes in the fortunes of the economy. All the dreams of the masses have been shattered and the economy has been allowed to be ruined in all respects—economically, socially, morally and ethically. The recurring damage inflicted on the economy due to his indecision and tolerating nonsense of the political leaders and bureaucrats, right under his nose, cannot be easily written off. All this would definitely find a place in the economic history of the country, as and when it is written. This is particularly true of the period from 2004 to 2014.
Gopalakrishnan Krishnan, online comment
 

III. Great Hopes from Dr Manmohan Singh

We had great hopes at the start of the millennium from Dr Manmohan Singh; but we were let down at the end of the decade because of his inaction. Because of him, India has wasted 10 years. We are 10 years behind schedule and we have a lot of catching up to do. Power shortage, spec-trum melee—you name it and we have a scam perpetrating in that sector.
Sujit Menon, by email
 

IV. Excellent Piece!

The piece on Dr Manmohan Singh is excellent. It takes me down memory lane not only to visits to Mumbai to cover the Harshad Mehta scam but also to savour the fresh air of liberalisation which, alas, ended too soon. 
 
I have pinned great expectations on Narendra Modi. I hope he, too, doesn’t let us down. In his case, the Opposition won’t let him work. 
NV Subramanian, by email
 

V. True Face of Dr Singh

Please accept my appreciation for the bold and fearless article written by Sucheta Dalal. Amongst legions of journalists and politicians, soft peddling over the issue of Dr Manmohan Singh’s integrity and honesty, Ms Dalal alone has had the courage to call a spade a spade. As we have gathered from the public outrage on social media, we, the ordinary citizens, are appalled at the extent to which this man compromised all the institutions he headed.
 
Yesterday, my maid, who earns Rs8,000/- per month brought certificates of two Ponzi schemes in which she invested a total of Rs65,000/- two years ago. Both the companies have shut shop since July 2014. When I checked on the Internet and told her so, her mouth fell and she was speechless. She has lost 50% of her life’s savings.
 
While Dr Singh gave a free hand to the rich to loot the country, he is also responsible for the ruin of millions of poor of this country. Being so highly qualified, I refuse to accept that he had no idea of the consequences of his policies and inactions.
 
I congratulate Moneylife for showing the true face of Dr Singh to the world.
Dr Vijaylaxmi Singh, by email
 

Deserves All Praise!

This is with regard to “Book Review of Bombay Mumbai—Life is Life, I Am Because of You” by Vayshnavi Ganesh. Many go through the life that the author, Amin, did when he was young. But only a few manage to pick themselves up and be what he is today. For that, he deserves all the praise and success he is getting. All the very best to him!
Sookie Skipper, online comment
 

Mesmerised by Charisma?

This is with regard to “Corporate Espionage and Worse: All Too Common” by Sucheta Dalal. In India, it is clear that only the shady survive and prosper. The supporters of the imprisoned businessman seem mesmerised by his charisma. In the past couple of years, we have seen the hide-and-seek game played out until the Supreme Court said ‘enough is enough’ and the fun and games stopped.
Kaviraj B Patil, online comment
 

Anaemic Growth?

This is with regard to “Government Spending: New Fuel for the Market?” by Debashis Basu and Jason Monteiro. I haven’t come across such a lucid commentary. Brilliant analysis. How I wish we had a manufacturing culture like the Germans to stay afloat in tough times. They never provided stimuli and still got out of anaemic growth in key sectors.
Joyce J Paul, online comment
 

Investigative Journalism Needed!

This is with regard to “Stock manipulation: Atlas Jewellery India”. Moneylife seems to be the only magazine investigating such wholescale rigging in the stock market. Everyone else seems too busy hawking financial products to do investigative journalism.
Salvadeswaran Srinivasan
 

A Genuine Heroine!

This is with regard to “ ‘Do one thing for the girl child today’, says Shaheen Mistri”. A genuine hero-ine in today’s world. She has the heart to want to help others in such a personal manner which is an inspiration for all of us. All the best to her and the organisation!
Sunil Kumar Hemnani
 

Will Financial Literacy Remain A Dream?

This is with regard to “Financial Marketing Vs Financial Education”. I do not know why this is news; nor is it surprising! The moment the public becomes financially literate, it will stop buying. So, busi-ness will logically spend on selling. If I ran a business, I would do the same. Financial literacy will be a dream in the next 2,000 years also.
R Balakrishnan 
 

IDP Requirements

This is with regard to “Driving Abroad?” by Veeresh Malik. IDP (international driving permit) issued in India is a ‘translation’ of the Indian driving licence with the passport number and vehicle catego-ry. IDP was quite easy to obtain once upon a time; it became difficult after 2004 and 2007. It is no longer that easy. One critical requirement at the RTO (Road Transport Office) is that the address of the applicant on the passport should match with the address of his driving licence. Why this is a crit-ical requirement is still not clear.
Jitendra
 

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Life Exclusive
What is the secret of winning cases in consumer courts?

While taking up the fight before a consumer court, the buyer finds it difficult to spend time and money. However, according to Rajyalakshmi Rao, former member Judge NCDRC, a brief, clear and precise complaint supported by relevant evidence can yield desired results for consumers

 

Although the government advertisement says Jago Grahak Jago, when it comes to taking up the fight before a consumer court, the buyer finds it difficult to spend time and money. However, according to Rajyalakshmi Rao, former Member Judge of the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC), consumer forums is the best place for consumers to approach in order to resolve their issues like deficiency in services provided, fraud or unfair trade practices.
 
Speaking at a Seminar on Consumer Rights Cases organized by Moneylife Foundation on 28 March 2015, she said, "Doors of consumer forums are open to all genuine consumers. An enlightened consumer is the king. When you know your rights and when you have all the evidence, you can call the shots."
 
Ms Rao is the only person who worked at all the three levels of consumer grievances redressal mechanism – on the District forum, the State Commission and the National Commission. She has spent over 17 years on the Bench since the enactment of the Consumer Rights Protection Act. 
 
The Consumer Protection Act, 1986 is a legislation that lays down the rights of the consumers, with the objective to promote and protect the rights of the consumers. The provisions of this Act cover both ‘goods’ and ‘services’ provided to the consumer. However, many consumers are still unaware of their rights, and that they have a platform where they can file a complaint and demand what is rightfully theirs.
 
It is important for the consumer to address any problem with a service provider with prompt action. This is especially important considering that the admissibility of a consumer complaint in court has a lapse period, and the consumer may be left in the cold if he enters litigation too late.
 
Even today, many consumers do not realise that the doors to these institutions are open to them in case they have been wronged in the delivery or performance of goods or services. For instance, harassment by recovery agents or banks for repayment of loans, medical negligence by a doctor or even unavailability of water in long distance public transport can be taken up with the consumer courts. (One family did approach District Forum after they found the toilets in Rajdhani Express to be dirty and without water supply. The court ruled in their favour and the Railways had to compensate the family)
 
"Everyone needs to fight for justice. We are not looking for disputing consumers, but you could write a registered letter to whoever has wronged you. Mention that you have the right to take this to court. Say, if they do not rectify the issue, you will have no option but to approach the consumer court. It's that simple... These people cannot fight everyone," Ms Rao said.
 
The speech was followed by a discussion and audience interaction with Ms Rao, moderated by Consumer Activist Jehangir Gai, who has been involved with consumer organisations since 1984. Mr Gai highlighted some of the key issues related to consumer rights' awareness and the struggles that a consumer has to face in the process of fighting for his rights, as some of these litigations take years to come to a conclusion. 
 
“Buyers are often unaware of their rights as a consumer and bad products or services are thought of as unavoidable. Even if they decide to approach the consumer court, many of them lose their zist to fight as the case may take one to three years and sometimes they simply give up midway. In addition, several times, consumers are found to have no proper evidence or documents to support their cases,” he said.
 

Mr Gai said, a buyer who wishes to approach the consumer court, needs to build his evidence. Like, he must note down the complaint number (docket) and time, job number and job cards as well as copies of correspondence with the concerned product seller/manufacturer or service provider. Even if you do not need to approach a consumer court, it is always better to preserve all the bills, payment receipts, warranty cards and servicing records, he added.
 
Later, Ms Rao responded to some questions posed by members of the audience. 
 
The key function of the Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission is to provide quick and affordable redressal of consumer disputes. These are quasi-judicial bodies that have been set up at District, State as well as National Level. Currently, there are over 600 district fora, 35 State Commissions and the NCDRC in Delhi at the apex. If a consumer is not satisfied by the decision of a District Forum, he can appeal to the State Commission. In case even they are unable to resolve his problem, he can resort to the National Commission.
 
Usually, District Fora deal with disputes of up to Rs20 lakh, State Commissions with disputes of between Rs20 lakh to Rs1 crore (and any appeals from the District Forum), while the National Commission deals with all disputes above Rs1 crore and any appeals from the State Commission. One need not necessarily approach these Courts through a lawyer. 
 
 
Some of the important points to note while filing consumer cases are –
 
  • - One cannot overemphasise the importance of evidence. Hence, keep all related documents, receipts, bills, correspondence, complaint reference numbers, etc. safe.
  •  
  • - If you decide to file a complaint, it is preferable that your complaint is brief, clear and precise.
  •  
  • - In your complaint, you would also need to state how the case falls within the jurisdiction of the forum / commission - whether the opposite party resides or works within the jurisdiction of the forum or whether the cause of grievance arose within the forum's jurisdiction.
  •  
  • - You also have the right to claim the cost of your complaint from the opposite party. Hence, include that amount in your complaint.
  •  
  • - It is also important that you take up whatever issues you have with the service provider, and later with the court if you choose to, promptly. This is because the admissibility of a consumer complaint in court has a lapse period.
 
 

 

NOTE:
Those seeking help or advice on consumer issues can contact
Moneylife Foundation’s Legal Resource Centre (LRC) ( http://moneylife.in/lrc.html )

 

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COMMENTS

vswami

2 years ago

From a commoner’s viewpoint (to supplement):

Consumer Forum is the one and only judicial forum / court before which,-

A) even with a little bit of / basic knowledge of the applicable law ( including governing rules and regulations, etc.) , which, of course needs to be acquired with some efforts put in; and
B) with ‘common sense’ endowed with, free of efforts, by nature;

anyone can hope to, also win, a case.

As regards A), should anyone have the wish and will, is not at all difficult to ‘acquire’; for, ‘knowledge’ (information) , is available, in any quantum as expected, simply for the asking of it.
Sources: Any number of websites devoted to the task of dissemination of useful information. If the related field is say, REALTY, websites commonly known are: apart from Money life, - Common floor, Apartment Adda, Praja.in , Citizen matters, etc.
As regards B), knowledge /feedback information, if sincerely looked for and gathered from the above mentioned and other websites, should normally be more than sufficient to meet the needs of any consumer.
KEY NOTE: The clues given above, and the route suggested, for having one’s own problems sorted out or resolved, without the need for external assistance , should satisfactorily work and help in scoring ; provided the feedback information is received on the same wavelength, as intended, and made maximum use of .
Read:
http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/feat...

More may follow!

vswami

2 years ago

OFFHAND
Two suggestions:

1. Same way as lately initiated and heard as already being done in certain other judicial forums (e.g. ITAT) submissions and arguments, if so opted for by consumer,may be permitted to be given only in writing. That should save considerable time and energy spent for personal representation and haring.

2, Status of every case pending requires, for sake of convenience, to be updated on a day to day basis, without fail, and promptly kept posted on the Forum's official website.

Gopalakrishnan Krishnan

2 years ago

No doubt Consumer redressal forum provides relief and it is literally free of cost except some incidental charges to pursue the case after filing.Some of the problems one could enlist against the Forum relate to delay in taking decisions, expecting to fight on cases individually by all even if the decision remain the same in all identical cases. Once a decision is taken against a consumer grievance, similar and identical cases should be given the verdict based on the decision already arrived at. Further, the consumer Forum can definitely take some initiatives to reduce the delay by improving the infrastructure, by enhancing the standards of efficiency and by circulating the decisions taken in respect of cases to all district, state and national levels. The forum also can levy some reasonable cost both from the aggrieved party and the service providers against whom the cases are filed.The cases should be disposed of within a period of maximum six months. The decisions should also be widely advertised to ensure against recurrences of such cases.This way the forum can bring in some efficiency and deficiency of service from service providers can also be taken care of.

REPLY

Professor P Radhakrishnan

In Reply to Gopalakrishnan Krishnan 2 years ago

YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT THE IDEAL. GROUND REALITIES ARE DIFFERENT. YOU HAVE NOT SAID ANYTHING ABOUT POOR JUDGEMENTS AND CORRUPTION IN THE FORUMS AND AMONG THE LAWYERS.

Gopalakrishnan T V

In Reply to Professor P Radhakrishnan 2 years ago

I had approached a District Consumer Forum In Bangalore for a Grievance involving Ford India Ltd.I made a complaint against the unfair trade practices resorted to by the Company to cheat the car buyers. In my case the amount involved was Rs less than 10000 and I fought the case without seeking any help of the advocte. The District court decided the case in my favour and asked FOrd India Ltd to pay me the Compensation amount. Since the Company referred the case to State Level Consumer Forum I had no choice but to fight the case and i came out successful. The forum ordered the company to pay within a month and I got it.I did not pay a single paise as bribe is a fact. I do agree there is a delay and that is because of the way of functioning in Government offfices. They have no infrastructure and they have no accountability for the delay.
I fully agree with the point that there is corruption in society and particularly in Government offices.I had an experience of this when I applied fora Katha certificate for a piece of plot I purchased in TN. Since i did not pay the bribe demanded, the katha was not issued to me for more than two years and I had to fight and get it without any bribe. But it took years. The charges for Khatha is only a pittance but the bribe demanded is several times of the Khatha charges. Perhaps the demand for bribe in Consumer Forums may be depending upon individuals in some offiices. In general my understanding and experience is that Consumer Forums do a good job when cases are referred to and fought with all logic and evidences. If bribe is demanded I strongly feel that is the fittest case to take up with the forum.

Professor P Radhakrishnan

2 years ago

My experience in the district and State consumer forums in Tamil Nadu is different. Some judges cannot write proper English and their judgments are irrational and one sided. My cases were against a builder. I suspect the judges were bribed. I have reason to believe that the lawyer whom I engaged took money from me and from the builder also; as both are Brahmins the Brahmin connection would have also gone against me. What is worse, that lawyer is likely to be a judge in Madras High Court shortly. I read about this in the media.
PROFESSOR P RADHAKRISHNAN

Professor P Radhakrishnan

2 years ago

My experience in the district and State consumer forums in Tamil Nadu is different. Some judges cannot write proper English and their judgments are irrational and one sided. My cases were against a builder. I suspect the judges were bribed. I have reason to believe that the lawyer whom I engaged took money from me and from the builder also; as both are Brahmins the Brahmin connection would have also gone against me. What is worse, that lawyer is likely to be a judge in Madras High Court shortly. I read about this in the media.
PROFESSOR P RADHAKRISHNAN

Professor P Radhakrishnan

2 years ago

My experience in the district and State consumer forums in Tamil Nadu is different. Some judges cannot write proper English and their judgments are irrational and one sided. My cases were against a builder. I suspect the judges were bribed. I have reason to believe that the lawyer whom I engaged took money from me and from the builder also; as both are Brahmins the Brahmin connection would have also gone against me. What is worse, that lawyer is likely to be a judge in Madras High Court shortly. I read about this in the media.
PROFESSOR P RADHAKRISHNAN

Professor P Radhakrishnan

2 years ago

My experience in the district and State consumer forums in Tamil Nadu is different. Some judges cannot write proper English and their judgments are irrational and one sided. My cases were against a builder. I suspect the judges were bribed. I have reason to believe that the lawyer whom I engaged took money from me and from the builder also; as both are Brahmins the Brahmin connection would have also gone against me. What is worse, that lawyer is likely to be a judge in Madras High Court shortly. I read about this in the media.
PROFESSOR P RADHAKRISHNAN

Padmakumar

2 years ago

I've won 2 cases with the Consumer Court. The first one in 2008(was resolved in about a few months), and the second this month (but, took 5 long years !!). In the second case, I filed the complaint in Sept 2009, and the Bangalore DF passed the order in my favour in April 2010. The OP appealed in SC, Karnataka, and the SC dismissed on admission. The OP went to NC, and the NC referred the case back to SC as it felt the SC had not evaluated the merits of the case before dismissing. This was in Oct 2010, and the SC passed the order (again in my favour), but only late last year !! I waited and fought..., and now I feel my efforts are rewarded. However, this kind of delay will discourage 99% of genuine customers !!

Harish Kohli

2 years ago

With Consumer Courts, consumers now have a window to redress their grievances. It was hoped the dispute resolution will be quick. Unfortunately this purpose has not been served.
I went to the District Forum in middle of 2008. The judgement was delivered in August 2011. Not satisfied with the compensation, I went to the State Commission in October 2011. For over a year it is pending at the final hearing stage for, except once, lack of quorum.
Each visit costs money, an unnecessary burden. I believe the post of members have not been filled up hence the delay.

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